Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Overcoming Guilt ~ Embracing Joy

Week 4- Walking with You

Guilt...
So hard to overcome...
because sometimes it is hard to understand...

Joy...
So hard to embrace...
because sometimes it is so hard to find...

Guilt is still hard for me. The first few weeks I was very forgiving of myself. I actually laughed just 2 days after Tossie's death. Hubby and I had an agreement to take the kiddies walking a couple nights a week after Tossie... It was that first walk, that our son did the cutest thing (can't remember right now) and I just burst out laughing! I threw my hand up to cover my mouth and looked at my husband. He smiled and gave me a hug, pulling me so close while saying 'I am glad that made you laugh'. I remember telling him how wrong it felt to laugh and how good it felt at the same time. That was the first pang of guilt...

Hubby later held me close to his heart and told me 'Losing Tossie shouldn't be just a sad experience. It shouldn't change you completely. We had her, we will always remember her, and will always want her. But, we have to live this life and we should enjoy what we can.'

I would remember that... on and off again. At her celebration of life, we had cake (which I made) and at one point I cried because I knew that I wouldn't get to make her birthday cake. Hubby's words reminded that at least I could make her celebration cake. That put a smile on my face... while a tear fell down my cheek.

Hubby and I talked about grief, feeling guilty, being happy, finding joy, and dreaming again.

We understood that we would grieve differently.
We knew that we would have to work together in our grief.
We knew that there would be times that we would feel guilty.
But that we couldn't let the guilt consume us.
We knew we would have to find a way to release that guilt.
We understood that there we be times of happiness... but that they wouldn't be perfect happiness.
We knew it would take time to find joy.
We are still searching for joy... true joy. The kind that brings peace, hope and happiness with it.
We know that it may take a long time to find it... but not to rush.
(But I do want to rush!)
Dreaming again... still waiting for that...

Fast forward to this week... This week is my daughter's 4th birthday. She has been planning this for about 6 months. I figured she would change this or that but she has kept it all the same... Purple and Red Woodland Fairies!

I knew I needed to write this post... but I knew that I needed to make my daughter's party. I battled with being guilty on both sides. I wanted to keep up with the posts as they are important to me. But my daughter will only ever have one 4th birthday party! So, on Monday I made the choice that my daughter's happiness would come first... I could play catch up with my blog, but not with preparing for her birthday!

I felt guilty in choosing Bee's party, like Tossie doesn't mean as much. But that guilt seems wrong... I shouldn't feel guilty for celebrating my daughter turning 4, so I gave that guilt over to God. I have been slowly giving him my guilt.

Guilt over not being the perfect wife,
Guilt over not being a good mom,
Guilt over not keeping a clean house,
Guilt over being angry,
Guilt over feeling like I don't miss Tossie enough,
Guilt over almost everything... this list could be endless!

But it is not...

God has given us the gift of joy! We shouldn't feel bad when we experience it. We should embrace it!

I have learned that Thankfulness and Gratitude are keys in finding joy...
If you are thankful for what you have and what you do not have, there is joy that can be given to you.
If you are grateful for every little thing in your life then you can have joy in everything.
If you choose to give your guilt to him, he can give you joy!

There are many more keys to joy... I don't know them yet, but I truly believe that God will walk with us and help us if we will be thankful for his presence and grateful for everything. He also gives us the joy of walking with others so that we can find joy together!

Thank you for walking with me...

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Now has a Facebook page!

https://www.facebook.com/TossiesTreeandPaintedRocks

First steps back to Normal

Share about your first steps back into life. What helped you survive in the world outside as you took those first tender steps? Are there still tender areas for you today, living in a world that doesn’t embrace or understand the loss of a baby/child? How do you cope with those struggles? What advice would you offer those new to this walk to encourage and bring hope? How has this changed for you from the beginning? If you are in early grief, what do you fear/struggle with as you try to navigate a new normal….life without your baby?

...The first few months were easy, kinda. We had a lot of help, love, and support. My husband and I grew so close together. I had no problem laughing, enjoying the little things that made up my day, I was sad, but not depressed. I was functioning, somewhat... I grew very tired at night so supper wasn't very homemade if at all.

It never bothered me to see a pregnant woman or a new baby. It never bothered me to explain to Bee why others had babies and we didn't. I was only bothered once... when there was a lady with a baby girl the same age as Tossie would have been. I was trying to find the chips I wanted and Bee saw the baby behind us. She stood on tiptoe to look into the stroller and almost fell over. The lady pushed Bee saying she didn't want her baby to get sick. Bee wasn't even close enough to touch her, much less breathe on her. And it broke my heart to see her treated that way. She tried to tell the the lady, that she just wanted to look and that our Tossie had died. I almost broke down right there! I grabbed a bag of chips and carried Bee out of the aisle, found Aron on the other side of the store and told him what happened- because he could see the look on my face. He was angry about it, as was I. But what could one do?


Life continued on fine for a few more months...Then, I fell into the pit...and am on my way back out... I can see the light, feel the sun, find enjoyment, but... now what?  What do I want to do with my life? How does one live?


I want to enjoy my day, not just a moment.

I want to have dreams for the future, not fear the unknown.
I want to help others, but I don't know if I can.
I want... I don't know what I want... and that makes me feel lost.

I have started making weekly goals.

Last week, I set a goal to have a Bread Baking day with some friends and show them how to make cheese!
Now, I am trying to plan my Bee's 4th birthday party... Purple Woodland Fairy! I'm to make her dress, make the decorations, make all the food, plan the games, and figure it all out. I'm excited to do this... but I still have a shadow...

I don't know what I normal is supposed to be! I want to live life, laugh, and love everything... but I don't want to live my life with this shadow of fear. I want to laugh and not feel guilty. I want to love everything, not question if it is worth my time. I want to feel like my life has meaning... that I am not just existing.


How does one have a normal life?


I know that the normal I had before will never be my normal now... but I don't know what my normal should be or how to find it!

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Happy 1/2 Birthday in Heaven Gabriel!


Thinking of you today Catherine! Many prayers, hugs and love for you...

This was taken at the creek by Tossie's Tree. I remembered how you like to let the names and flowers be taken by the sea. Well, we don't have a sea in Missouri so... when I saw the sunrise on the creek, I just knew that I would have to take a photo for you! I have been trying to figure out what to do today all week :)

Much love for you Momma <3

This is the day...



That the Lord has made!

Meredith

Thanking of you Sarita!

Friday, January 18, 2013

Liebster Award

Thanks to Gabriel's momma Catherine of Twinkle of Light for nominating me...



RULES
This award is given to new or up and coming bloggers who have less than 200 followers. The award is then passed along to other bloggers in the same category to help spread the word and support one another.
1. Answer the questions the tagger has set for you.
2. Then, create 11 new questions for the bloggers you pass the award to.
3. Choose 11 new bloggers (with less than 200 followers) to pass the award to and link them in your post.
4. Go back to their page and tell them about the award.
5. No tag backs.

Questions from Catherine...
Do you believe in Heaven? Why or Why not?
Yes, because God is evident in everything around us.

What is your favorite book?
Just Above a Whisper by Lori Wick

Have you ever been on tv?
No

Do you have any tattoos? If so describe them...
No

What are you most proud of?
My family

Do you remember what you dreamed about last night?
No, I don't... but that is probably a good thing!

Would you rather cook or do the dishes?
Cook or Bake, but I don't mind doing dishes if the sink isn't overflowing.

Have you ever been on a blind date?
No

Have you ever met a famous person? If so, who?
Yes! KJ 52- he is a Christian Rap Artist



What is the best gift you have received related to the loss of your baby?
Truly random gifts... Ones that had no request... Ones that show up just because...

If they made a movie about you and your life, what would the title be?
Here, There, and Everywhere...

I am passing the Liebster Award to...
Tesha of Tesha's Treasures
Shauna of PinWheels from Heaven
Sarah of Life and Grace
Anna of Precious Baby Alanna Phoebe
Jenn of His Grace is Sufficient
Karin of A Spirit of Hope
Celia of In Our Hearts Photo Pendants
Monica of The Writer Chic
Tina of Elena's Echos
RyAnne of Good Grief 
Heather of No Longer Reticent

My questions are...
1) Sunrise or Sunset?
2) Cooking or Baking?
3) Perfect Day?
4) Do you prefer Movies or Books?
5) What do you hope to accomplish this year?
6) Favorite Animal?
7) White Milk or Chocolate?
8) Favorite Dessert?
9) Your Favorite Treat for Yourself?
10) What do you collect?
11) What do you like most about Nature?

Scrapbook Tag


This just came in the mail from Sarita at One Perfect Rose!

Prayers Needed

Today feels like a rough day... woke up with a terror. So, I woke hubby and he prayed for me. I was able to go back to sleep and woke up again peacefully but the feeling I had in my chest from the terror was still there.

I spent some time at Tossie's Tree just sitting and praying and meditating. Which helped... but it feels like I will need prayers all day!

For God did not give us a spirit of fear, but a spirit of power, love and a strong mind.
II Timothy 1:7

Thank you for that verse Karin, I had been looking for it!

Samuel

Thinking of you Shannon!

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Plans

(Yesterday's photo)

(This morning's photo- 15 degrees out there!)

Plans fail for lack of counsel, but with many advisers they succeed.
Proverbs 15:22

Jenna

Thinking of you Franchesca!

Monday, January 14, 2013

Clinging in the Pit

 If you’re in the pit, currently, share your struggles. What can others do to encourage you?


I knew that Christmas would be hard... so we decided to do Advent. A nightly study of hope, peace, joy and love. We also sang hymns each night with the kids, followed by prayer, and then they would get to blow out the candles. I also kept busy with 12 Days of Christmas with you in Heaven from Small Bird Studios. But on Christmas Eve night after opening presents with family, the topic turned to The Beast of Revelations.  On a night that was supposed to be about hope, joy, peace and love was ruined by talk. We then had to leave and go see more family. We were kept up very late waiting with crying/cranky kids.  That night about midnight I feel asleep... a fitful and restless sleep filled with terror.

The feeling of hopelessness, fear and darkness filled me. I tried my best to ignore those feelings on Christmas... but it was hard. Not to mention it felt like no one wanted to remember my Tossie.

Every night after that ... I had night terrors... I felt fearful... That something horrible would happen to my precious kiddies... That they would suffer... I felt hopeless... I felt terrified... I didn't want to live... But I didn't want to leave my kiddies or my husband... Things that bought me happiness before or even just enjoyment would upset me... Reading the Bible would bring some comfort and then a verse I didn't understand would send me into terror again...

I knew I shouldn't feel that way and my husband was really worried. I had been fearful before Christmas but when the terrors started he told me to call our pastor.  I called and we set up an appointment for the next day. (the appointment was set up for 2 days after Christmas). The pastor listened, showed me scripture, talked about his own loss of a child, challenged my husband to make more of an effort to lead us as a family, and prayed with us. I felt at peace and slept well that night.

But the fear came back full and hard the next morning. I prayed and read the scriptures of peace and hope. Then a few hours later it was back... It was a constant cycle... It still is... Some days I feel consumed by fear to the point I feel I am suffocating.  Other days- prayer, taking some time to be alone with God, walking and reading his word pull me through to the next day. But some days it will only hold me for an hour or so.

I feel as though I have no hope or faith because I feel so hopeless and lost.

I feel like a failure.

I feel like this world is hopeless and there is nothing good in it.

I feel like I am hopeless.

I feel like I can't be happy again. And when I do, I feel like I shouldn't be happy.

I have never felt so hopeless.

People talk about goals, dreams and plans that they have for this year. When I try to think about the future... I feel darkness or terror. It makes me feel so bad, mostly because my daughter's 4th birthday is coming up. I am trying to plan a beautiful party for her but then I feel like what is the point. I know why I want too! I love her and she is one of the biggest blessings God has given me. But this fear and hopelessness covers me and it is a constant struggle.  I shouldn't dread my daughter's birthday!

March! I can't really see past March 10th... I should be planning Tossie's 1/2 birthday... But I won't be... I want to have something to look forward too so that it doesn't seem so dark. I was thinking of having a little cake and seeing if anyone wanted to remember her with us by writing her name or doing something in her memory and photographing it. But it feels wrong to ask...

Keeping busy helps... having something to look forward to helps... talking helps... spending time with people who care regardless of my feelings at that time helps... knowing people care helps...

I long for hope and peace... not just moments of it. But to feel at peace and to know that there is hope for the future despite this fallen world. Yesterday, our pastor said that we are to enjoy the time we have here on this earth while we wait for the return or we are called home. I know this but it is so hard to feel hopeful when we see just how broken this world is...

I have faith that God will see me through... I know that he is carrying me... even when I can't feel it at the time,

What others can do to encourage me?
Pray!
Let me know that you are praying for me!
If you find a scripture that is encouraging please pass it on!

I am sure that there is more but I really don't know... I don't know a lot of things!




Bo

Thinking of you Kayla!

Isaiah

Thinking of you Jennifer!

Carleigh and Jordan



Thinking of you Holly!



Thursday, January 10, 2013

Her Roses...

Oct 10th 2012

Nov 10th 2012

Dec 10th 2012

Her 4th Rose- Jan 10th 2013

The story behind her roses...
We received only one bouquet after Tossie's death. A bouquet of pink, peach, and lavender roses. The roses comforted me... Like my Tossie- they were so beautiful but sadly wouldn't get to last either- but I could enjoy them while I had them. Same as her. So each month I get a pink rose to place on our table and it very slightly feels like we are all together.
Those roses are what I carried out of the hospital and every month I hold one...

4 months

4 months... I really don't like saying that. It hurts to say it!

I have a tradition of getting a pink rose for Tossie on the monthiversary and 2 rainbow heart lollipops; it is so cold and rainy today... walking just might be out of the question with the kiddies.

And I'm tired... so tired, I didn't want to get up this morning! Hubby didn't want to either. But we did and all I want to do is crawl under the covers cuddling my 2 very special blessings- wishing Hubby could be here too.

I want to cry and scream!

I feel as if I don't know how to pray.

I just want to turn a movie on and get lost for a while.

I want to fast forward the day til Hubby is home to hold me.

I feel so alone!

I know that I am not alone, but right now I feel so alone!

4 months

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Prayers for Ella's Momma

There is a new momma tonight... Joining us on this journey.
 I wish I had more to offer her right now than prayer!


Monday, January 7, 2013

Walking With You: Intro and Where We Are Now

I have decided to join the Sufficient Grace Ministries- Walking With You series...

My name is Kyla. I belong to God as his child and he has blessed me Indeed with my family!

My husband is Aron and we have 3 beautiful children. Two with us- Daughter Bee (almost 4) and Son Buddy (just turned 2 on Saturday) and Our Beautiful Tossie is in Heaven!

God blessed us in January of 2012 when we became pregnant with our beautiful Tossie. We found out on Feb 21st 2012 that we would be having another child. We were so happy but scared; as I am prone to pre-eclampsia. Sure enough, I found out in July that my proteins were way too high... I cried because I knew what it could mean. I carried on with the weekly tests, meds, and labs for 8 weeks. Then on Sept 7th, my doctor gave me the good news... My blood pressure was stable (hypertensive but better than before) and my proteins were normal. I was 36 weeks that day and the good news meant that I wouldn't be induced til 39 weeks as long as I passed my then twice weekly tests, labs and visits. Sept 9th, 2012... I went into labor while at the Family Sunday Dinner. The contractions were mild so I waited for hubby to get home from Drill. We went to the hospital... and were told there wasn't a heartbeat.

We were moved to a room that was sealed (noise and other)... Room 6. I told the nurse I needed a few minutes before they started the induction. I got into the shower... And just started to cry and pray. I prayed for strength. I prayed that it wasn't true. I prayed that if it was that he would help us through. I prayed that I knew she was never mine- but I wanted her. I prayed for my husband. I prayed for my kiddies who were eager to meet her. I prayed for peace.

And he answered!

(Aron took this photo- Her first photo!)


I delivered her at 0213 on Sept 10th 2012.

(When we pray... we place our heads together. There were no words)


Even though my labor could have been better, I made it through. The nurses I had couldn't believe the peace I had after the meds were off. (I had a very bad reaction to the cocktail in my system) I did have peace. There were times I had to rely on family and friends to help find that peace again, but I had it.

He answered my prayers through the nurses, my friends and family that came to see us, in the way my kiddies reacted to their baby sister, and in all the help we received once home.

I am broken, I am not strong enough to walk this path alone, and only through God's grace will I have a future.

Where am I at? At 3 months I was feeling confident in myself on getting through the grief. At 3.5 months I sank into a terrifying depression... so deep and dark that I couldn't see any point at all in life.

When my hubby saw this he told me to call our pastor and set up a time to talk. We did and even though it has only been two weeks. It has been a very hard 2 weeks. Filled with devotions, prayer, lots of prayer from friends, and phone calls to my pastor and his wife. But I can see some light again. I can see hope and peace; not as things of the past- but as things I can have in my future. It is a daily struggle and I know that there will always be struggles. But with God's help I can make it through.

It will soon be 4 months since she went to Heaven. Since then I have discovered so much about life.

I can have hope, joy and peace again!

Thursday, January 3, 2013

In the Morning!


In the morning O Lord, You hear my voice; in the morning I lay my requests before You and wait in expectation. ~ Psalm 5:3

Kadin

Thinking of you Misty!

Joseph

Thinking of you Danielle!

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

A Word...

I had never heard of having a word for the year, until yesterday. I pray the Lord will reveal to me what he wants me to learn in this new year!